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Full text of "The Egyptian Problem"

6                       THE EGYPTIAN PROBLEM                CHAP.
all the costly offerings of generations of Faithful. They forbade prayers for the Sultan as Khalif, they prohibited the use of tobacco and scents and all fine raiment, and compelled the most rigid observance of every rite and ceremony prescribed by ancient tradition. The .Sultan appealed to his Egyptian pasha who had driven the British into the sea in 1807 to crush the Wahabi rebellion, which had for nearly half a century defied his thunderbolts. In 1811 Mehemet Ali first sent one of his own sons, Tussoon, who after one disastrous campaign succeeded in reconquering Medina, where it is related that a Scotch renegade who had been made prisoner in 1807 was the first in the breach and the first to enter the sacred tomb. Jedda and Mecca surrendered, and Mehemet Ali was able to send the keys of the Holy Places to Sultan Mahmud as proof of loyal and victorious service. But not till 1818 was the stubborn resistance of the Wahabis broken by Ibrahim, another and more famous son of Mehemet Ali, who captured their last stronghold, Deraya, and rased it to the ground, and sent Abdullah Ibn Saoud to Constantinople to pay the penalty for three generations of rebels. Even then Wahabism did not die out. Its embers went on smouldering throughout the nineteenth century and have threatened more than once recently to burst out again into flame. Another Ibn Saoud marched forth only last year to challenge the claims of the new King of the Hedjaz to the hegemony of Arabia. Fortunately for the latter, whose troops were badly beaten to the east of Mecca, the Wahabi leader had always entertained friendly relations with the British power in the Persian Gulf, and refrained at our instance from pursuing his victory—at least for the present.
A few years later the Sultan called once more upon his powerful Egyptian vassal for service in a yet more dangerous field. The Greeks were waging their long and heroic struggle for independence and, in spite of many vicissitudes, with a measure of success which commanded the sympathies of Europe and strained the resources ofne to death in the streets of the capital. Egypt wasit in Egypt.    Within the first year of the Occupation